The Giants and the Cowboys have staged many a battle over the years with some being good and some being bad and a few in between. These five games are the best New York Giants victories since 1980 in one person’s opinion.
November 9, 1980 With Giants in a midst of another disappointing season the Cowboys came to town locked in a battle with Philadelphia for supremacy in the NFC East. The Giants shocked the Cowboys on this day with a fourth quarter rally that ended up costing Dallas the division. Among the highlites of this game was a second quarter touchdown pass to defensive end George Martin. Final New York 38 Dallas 35
December 19, 1981: The Giants came into this game needing a win and loss the next day by the Packers to the Jets to clinch their first playoff berth since 1963. In a defensive struggle and a couple missed field goals by kicker Joe Danelo the Giants needed a late fumble by Tony Dorsett which setup a game tying field goal by Danelo. In overtime a interception by rookie linebacker Byron Hunt set Danelo up for a game winning 35 yard field goal. Coupled with the Packers loss to the Jets the next day the Giants qualified for the playoffs for the first time since 1963. Final New York 13 Dallas 10 ot
November 2, 1986: In a game that marked the changing of the guard in the NFC East in the mid 1980’s the Giants and the Cowboys met for suprmacy in the NFC East. Earlier in the season the Cowboys beat the Giants on a last minute Herschel Walker touchdown. In a very physical game the Giants held off a late fourth quarter Cowboy rally and took this game and used it as a building block for their first Super Bowl Championship the following January. The Cowboys on the other hand went 1-7 over the second half of the season and marked the beginning of the end of the Tom Landry regime. Final New York 17 Dallas 14
January 2, 2005: In a game featuring two teams having a down season this game marked the coming of age for rookie quarterback Eli Manning. Manning who struggled in his first few starts as Giants quarterback before turning it around against Pittsburgh and Cincinnati even thogh he fell short in those games. This marked the first time he led the Giants to victory and the first time he did it coming from behind as Tiki Barber scored a last minute touchdown for the Giants to end the season on a positive note.
Final New York 28 Dallas 24
January 1, 2012: In a showdown for the 2011 NFC Eastern division championship with the winner making the playoffs with the loser going on vacation earlier than expected. The Giants jumped out to a quick 21-0 half time lead and then withstood a Dallas rally into the fourth quarter The Giants regrouped and cruised to a 31-14 victory to make the playoffs and rest is history. Final New York 31 Dallas 14
The Giants and the Cowboys are bitter rivals who have staged many games over the years that have had implications for one or the other. In the early years when the Cowboys where the darlings of the NFL they dominated the rivalry. In recent years when things evened out or one or the other had the advantage they still played close or tight games no matter what the won loss record indicated.